For internal decision-making I might agree with Jacques, but I believe the purpose of these external surveys is to have "common" definitions among the institutions for appropriate comparisons among them.

If I remember right, I asked this a while back and the answer I found was what Micah explained.


Brent Goodman
Director, Institutional Research
Point Loma Nazarene University
3900 Lomaland Dr.
San Diego, CA  92106
(619) 849-2371

On Tue, Sep 27, 2016 at 12:31 PM, Detiege, Jacques <> wrote:

That should be an internal institutional decision.

But, your institution should have a consistently applied policy.

Different institutions have different standards for who is included in their cohort.


From: George Allen []
Sent: Tuesday, September 27, 2016 2:13 PM
To: Common Data Set <>
Subject: [cds] Definition of "Degree-Seeking"




If we have a student who enrolls in credit-bearing courses as a first-time, full-time undergraduate, but who says they do not intend to graduate from our institution and indeed transfers out after their first year, should they be included in our cohort? Do they count as “degree-seeking”, or not?


Thank you,


George Allen

Director of Institutional Research

Hillsdale College